The father of Belle Brockhoff has issued a statement apologising for the timing of an email in which he questioned the funding of his daughter and other snowboarders in the Australian team.
Bruce Brockhoff sent a long and at times rambling email the day before the men’s scheduled snowboard cross event, taking aim at various Australian Olympic officials and complaining about a perceived lack of support for certain athletes.
“It was never my intention to upset the men’s boarder cross event nor any one of the contestants especially Alex (Chumpy) Pullin, Jarryd Hughes nor Cam Bolton on the Australian Olympic team,” he wrote.
“The intention of my email, to the press, was to point out reasons why some of the Australian boardercross team felt the need to form a lose (sic) group supporting one another calling themselves #teamoutcast.
“The reason I issued the email Sunday night/Monday was to gain maximum publicity hot on the heals (sic) of my daughter Belle’s race at her first Olympics. To delay this email I felt would lesson (sic) its impact.”
Brockhoff said he had been battling with Ski and Snowboard Australia, the Olympic Winter Institute and the Australian Olympic Committee for a year about what he thought was appropriate funding for his daughter.
He admitted now that after pressing the issue he got “about 95 per cent of appropriate support”.
“Again I apologise for the timing of my email which was not meant to hurt rather to maximise and insure (sic) my daughter’s future in her beloved sport especially at the Olympics,” he said.
“I apologise to all those who feel they have been offended including family.”
Earlier, champion snowboarder Torah Bright expressed her disappointment over the saga, saying she was appalled by the email and calling on Brockhoff to be held accountable for his words.
“I am speechless. I am appalled actually,” the Vancouver gold medal winner said.
“Belle has put on such an incredible show, she rode so well and to have this have any shadow over her is beyond me.
“…It’s about these guys competing and it’s not about parents meddling and using someone else as a vehicle for their own purpose”
The AOC said it would respond to specific claims made by Brockhoff after the men’s snowboard cross race with occurred on Tuesday.